Scaling-up Sustainable Aquaculture Development in Sri Lanka

The Government of Sri Lanka is increasingly emphasizing aquaculture development as a means to foster rural development, alleviate poverty, and increase food security. A two-year IDRC-funded project identified challenges to the sustainable management of aquaculture, including poor knowledge mobilization and low connectivity, particularly for smallholder farmers. Pilot interventions tested the effectiveness of mobile short text messaging to disseminate information to farmers and others in the aquaculture industry. Building on this project, researchers will test three ways of scaling-up smallholder aquaculture development in the northwestern, northern, and eastern provinces. The project will target farmers involved in shrimp and oyster cultivation, as well as fish farmers, particularly women who play a large role in the industry. First, they will assess ways of increasing knowledge connectivity among women and men farmers using different information and communication technologies, such as mobile phones and a web-based platform. The project will also test the efficacy of different governance models for sustainable aquaculture management, to understand which institutional partnerships work best for knowledge mobilization. Third, the project will find ways to overcome factors currently limiting sustainable production, namely the supply of fingerlings for culture-based fisheries and capacity for early diagnosis of shrimp diseases. The project will directly reach about 2,000 smallholder aquaculture farmers or 75% of the households engaged in aquaculture. It is expected that this will increase production and income for farmers by 25%.

View all related project outputs in the IDRC Digital Library.

Project ID


Project status


Start Date

Monday, July 15, 2013

End Date

Tuesday, November 11, 2014


14 months

IDRC Officer

Ahmed, Sara

Total funding

CA$ 410,300


Sri Lanka, Central Asia, Far East Asia, South Asia, Canada


Canadian International Food Security Research Fund

Project Leader

Tim DeJager


British Columbia Aquatic Food Resources Society

Institution Country


Project Leader

Dr. Sam Daniel

Project Leader

Prof. Sunil Jayakody


Wayamba University of Sri Lanka

Institution Country

Sri Lanka

Institution Website